10 Weird Diseases

  • November 07, 2009
  • 517,606
  • Science

The sheer range of diseases that affect humans is overwhelming, but it’s as infinitely interesting as it is exhausting. Whether they’re physical, mental, or both, these weird diseases are some of the most intriguing:

10.

Elephantiasis

Elephantiasis (often misspelled or mispronounced as “elephantitis”) is characterized by an extreme swelling of the limbs or regions of the head and neck. This effect is caused by an excess fluid build-up in the tissues. The condition is caused by several parasites that affect the lymphatic system, all of which are transmitted by mosquitoes.

elephantiasis

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9.

Pica

People with Pica exhibit an irrational desire to eat non-food items. This behavior can occur in pregnant women (where it is often associated with certain mineral deficiencies), but is especially prevalent in young children. Patients may eat anything, from paint and sand to animal feces.

pica

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8.

Hypertrichosis

Hypertrichosis, sometimes called “Human Werewolf Syndrome”, is characterized by excessive hair growth. It is generally only a cosmetic problem, and though it is exceptionally rare, patients can live relatively normal lives.

hypertrichosis

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7.

Capgras Delusion

The Capgras delusion (or Capgras syndrome) is a rare disorder in which a person holds a delusion that an acquaintance (typically someone close) has been replaced with an imposter. This delusion can be so strong that they may actually attack the loved one.

capgras delusion

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6.

Alice in Wonderland Syndrome

Individuals with this strange syndrome will incorrectly perceive the sizes of things: from objects, to animals, to parts of their own body. Their hands may appear enormous to them, while a horse will appear to be the size of a cat.

alice in wonderland syndrom

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